Plan International Canada amplifies United Nations’ rallying cry to invest in women this International Women’s Day

As the latest edition of the Girls Belong Here youth leadership program takes flight, Plan urges Canadians to invest in girls’ potential for a prosperous future for all.

TORONTO, March 6, 2024 – Ahead of International Women’s Day (IWD), March 8, girls’ rights organization Plan International Canada is amplifying the United Nations’ call for this day to invest in women, particularly in young women and girls. Driven by the knowledge that investing in girls’ leadership and agency fuels prosperous and equitable societies, the organization invites Canadians to support young women and girls today.

Globally, women hold just 26.7% of seats in parliament and 28.2% of management positions in the workplace. The World Economic Forum estimates that it will be 131 years before gender equality is achieved. Plan International Canada underscores that these statistics will not improve without significant global investment to help young women and girls achieve their ambitions. As several recent studies have shown, their vast economic potential alone could transform the global economy.

“Investing in the extraordinary potential of young women will pave the way for a safer, more equal and just world and, undoubtedly, a more prosperous future,” said Plan International Canada President and CEO Lindsay Glassco. “In 2023, Plan International’s work reached more than 22 million girls globally. Imagine what remarkable change, ideas, innovation and prosperity will come thanks to them. We must continue to invest in girls and young women so they can learn, lead, decide and thrive. We won’t stop supporting them until we are all equal.”

According to a recent Plan International report, achieving a 100% upper-secondary-school completion rate for girls by 2030 could raise emerging economies’ GDP by 10%, and completing 12 years of education could result in girls’ contributing US$15 to $30 trillion to the global economy over their lifetimes.

Plan International Canada invests in young women at home through its signature domestic youth leadership program, Girls Belong Here, which is currently underway. The program invites Canada-based girls, young women and gender-diverse youth ages 18 to 24 to step into the high-profile roles of leaders and executives in organizations for hands-on mentorship and professional development opportunities while also providing space for organizations to learn from and leverage the youths’ wisdom, perspective and passion.

“One of the things I did as part of the program was give a presentation about the initiatives I wanted to see in the organization I worked with, and I’ve actually seen them implemented over the past months,” said Girls Belong Here alumna Arissa Roy. “The opportunity to connect with so many different people was a big highlight for me. This program is not just for a few days or weeks. It’s not just a moment in time. It’s an open door to a world of possibilities.”

As a champion for children’s rights and girls’ equality around the globe, Plan International Canada recognizes that girls are the change makers of today, propelling innovation, equality and prosperity, and invites Canadians to invest in their leadership – and the future – at

About Plan International Canada

Plan International Canada is a member of a global organization dedicated to advancing children’s rights and equality for girls. Plan International has been building powerful partnerships for children for over 85 years and is now active in more than 80 countries.

We stand with children, especially girls, wherever they are oppressed, exploited, left behind or not equally valued. We’re determined optimists and will continue to persevere until we are all equal.

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